Home improvement season is here, and outdoor spaces rule

Outdoor living spaces were prioritized during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, when public gatherings were greatly limited and individuals were urged to stay home as much as possible. Such demands had a ripple effect on various industries, including home design.

According to a survey conducted by the New Home Trends Institute in collaboration with Pro Builder, 58 per cent of the more than 300 residential architects, designers, and design-minded builders who participated said the connection to the outdoors/nature will be an important influence on their design choices in the years to come. In addition, 45 per cent of respondents indicated increased attention will be afforded to outdoor entertaining spaces.

So what might the outdoor spaces of homes built in a not-so-distant future look like? Respondents to the survey anticipated a growing demand for various built-in outdoor features, including firepits or fireplaces; outdoor kitchens; gazebos or pergolas; pools; and spas or hot tubs.

Although trends and consumer demands are ever-shifting, architects and designers are anticipating that future homeowners will want more developed outdoor living spaces and greater access to nature, which is something current homeowners can keep in mind when renovating their properties.

Another thing to keep in mind when it comes to home renovations is what could be called the “wow factor”. It’s that instant appeal that is noticeable the moment visitors pull up to the curb, and exterior renovations perhaps add the most bang for your buck because they add immediate curb appeal. Much in the way it has been said people eat with their eyes first — which is why chefs spend so much time on elaborate plating — buyers will judge a property by how it looks when they arrive, even before they’ve stepped inside a home. In essence, home buyers often judge a book by its cover. A worn exterior may indicate to potential buyers that the home was not maintained, however, a false assumption may be.

Hardscaping isn’t a new trend, but it has been trending in recent years. Hardscaping is an umbrella term that includes everything from outdoor living rooms to incorporating natural stone into a landscape. Outdoor living rooms are one hardscaping trend that has become increasingly popular of late. The home improvement experts at HGTV note that recently homeowners have looked to create covered outdoor rooms that can be enjoyed more frequently than patios or decks that are not protected from the elements.

Outdoor lighting is also something to keep in mind, as individuals looking to spend more time enjoying their properties outdoors want more lighting outside. Ambient outdoor lighting can be utilized throughout a property. Such lighting can light up walkways and driveways and be used to light up landscaping features like trees and gardens.

Remodeling with a return on investment (ROI) in mind can be a smart strategy for homeowners, whether you’re thinking about moving in the next few months or further down the road. Even though this approach is an exact science, in many instances it can be savvy for homeowners to consider what buyers may want when planning home improvements.

Homeowners may be surprised to learn which renovations garner the best ROI at resale. The home loan and refinancing company RenoFi indicates that overall home improvement projects provide a 70 per cent ROI on average, but garage door replacement (93.3 per cent ROI) and adding a manufactured stone veneer (91.4 per cent ROI) top the list. The next closest renovation is replacing siding with a fiber cement product (68.3 per cent ROI).

The majority of renovations on Remodeling magazine’s list of the best investments are exterior renovations, making this area of ​​a home a particular point of interest for homeowners.

It’s important for homeowners to consider all factors before beginning a renovation. Certain projects offer a stronger return on investment than others, and that’s a significant consideration for homeowners thinking of selling their homes.

Home design trends tend to be fickle. But recognition of the current trends in exterior home design can set homes apart and turn properties into awe-inspiring places to enjoy the great outdoors.

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